It's a long story. The ending is happy.
The barn cat that we borrowed came through and both of our persians got pregnant in March.
Sunday morning we awoke to Avonlea bewailing a dead kitten left outside our bedroom door.
Guinevere had had one baby. It was cold and lifeless and abandoned outside our door.
I knew she hadn't given birth there because there was no blood or birthing liquids. I had a vague idea that maybe she had more kittens somewhere else. We searched the house and found nothing. No kittens, no mess. Emotionally spent, I gave up and got back into bed.
I found where Guinevere had her kittens....between Dave and I....on our bed!
And we didn't even wake up.
After this mishap we were determined to watch Jane like a hawk and make sure we knew when she was in labor.
Monday night she started contractions.
We lost the first kitten that came out (as in it died, we didn't misplace it). Dave was down getting the alcohol to sterilize the scissors and we didn't get it out of the sac fast enough.
Grief. Tears. Determination.
The second kitten came. Dave grabbed it and rubbed it down with a warm towel. I cut the umbilical cord. No response.
Prayer. More rubbing. Dave did everything but lick it.
Movement. Sides expanding with breath. Rejoicing.
Another kitten came 2 1/2 hours later. It's now the middle of the night. We're tired but determined not to lose another kitten. Jane actually takes an interest in this one and helps us warm it. She cuts the umbilical cord herself. Yes!
We watched Jane for another couple of hours and realized she was done. We got to sleep for a bit before we had to get up for a busy day. And we were so thankful for two healthy kittens......
Monday night 18 HOURS after the last kitten ....Jane delivered another one. Avonlea found it and screamed loud enough for the neighbors to share in the joy.
Two hours later when Dave and I checked the kittens before bed we noticed that Jane was contracting. You guessed it, another kitten! Grand total....4!
We can't express how thankful we are that everything went as well as it did. We knew that persian cats needed help birthing, but we had no idea they needed that much help!
Grant asked the next day about selling them and I replied, "Would I sell one of you guys! I birthed these kittens!"
Perhaps this reaction will soften.
We certainly don't need nine persian cats.